I recently read a scientific article which argued that women are most responsive to their cats when they are in their mid twenties. I believe this, just like I believe that George Washington was indeed the first president and that Tillamook medium cheddar cheese is basically manna from heaven. All my cat has to do is meow questioningly, cock one ear, or flick her tail, and I instantly try to determine what it is she is saying. Is she happy? Did she like her chicken florentine with mixed garden greens? Am I sitting in her spot on the couch?
My name is Danae, and I overanalyze my cat. It's not something that I'm proud of, but whether I like it or not it's now a part of my wonderful and neurotic personality. So I accept it. I continue to worry about whether her quality of life is up to her standards, and continue to conclude that it is probably not. I know deep down that this is poppycock and that she does love me, but then a niggling voice in the back of my head whispers that she is the Meryl Streep of cats and is acting the role she knows I want her to play.
Still, she knows me, and I know her. We both are slightly annoying, demand our way, and prefer solitude to company. I apparently picked the feline form of myself, and together we are only making each other worse. It's comforting, in a way. At any point when we've decided we've had enough of the other's antics, we retreat to opposite sides of the apartment and give each other space. Or we go on being our obnoxious selves. She knows when I feel like curling into a ball and throwing the world away, and I know when she thinks the gourmet food I just put on her plate is closer to dog crap than cat food. Yet she still curls up on my bed with me at night and is there when I wake up in the morning. She's far superior to any boyfriend I've ever had, and most of my girlfriends. She may judge me, but only silently, and she always makes me feel like a conquering hero when I open the front door. And since silent support is what girls in their twenties need most, I'll continue to ask myself whether her life befits the gem of a friend that she is.